News So, you consider yourself a Democrat, do you?

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Evo said:
Some people don't care to label themselves, or be part of a group that thinks in one set way. Some people prefer to take a balanced look at each individual problem and solve it in the best possible way. I don't see any value in being on any particular side and throwing rocks and stones at another group to make myself feel better about my own beliefs. I see way too much of it.
Nonsense. Everyone thinks in one set way. It is the nature of the human mind. Merely refusing to fall under a label does not make a person any more capable of taking a balanced look at a problem and creating a solution. Unless you can make an argument that your view of the world is personal and unique, I see no reason why you are any different from a person who does identify with your so-called 'label'. (a peice of terminology used millions of times from the individuality movement which originally gave it it's negative connotation)
 

Archon

Smurf said:
Nonsense. Everyone thinks in one set way. It is the nature of the human mind. Merely refusing to fall under a label does not make a person any more capable of taking a balanced look at a problem and creating a solution. Unless you can make an argument that your view of the world is personal and unique, I see no reason why you are any different from a person who does identify with your so-called 'label'. (a peice of terminology used millions of times from the individuality movement which originally gave it it's negative connotation)
I have a problem with the words "one set way." It seems to me that there's a difference between saying that the solution to all problems is antibiotics, and saying that the solution to some problems is antibiotics and other problems, (like war, or crop shortages, etc) other things. The first is thinking in "one set way," while the second is refusing to apply the same set of beliefs (antibioticism :smile: ) to all problems you encounter. If you don't base all of the solutions (to problems relevant to your ideology) that you pursue on a single set of beliefs, then you aren't really a true follower of that single ideology. Hence, you can't accurately be called an antibioticist if you don't proclaim that antibiotics are the solution to all illnesses.
 
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Smurf said:
Nonsense. Everyone thinks in one set way. It is the nature of the human mind. Merely refusing to fall under a label does not make a person any more capable of taking a balanced look at a problem and creating a solution. Unless you can make an argument that your view of the world is personal and unique, I see no reason why you are any different from a person who does identify with your so-called 'label'. (a peice of terminology used millions of times from the individuality movement which originally gave it it's negative connotation)
So a baby thinks in one set way and he/she cannot change that one set way? So we are all born thinking the way we think and we cannot change? In case you didn't notice that is precisely what you're saying Smurf.... :rolleyes:

In fact....that post is complete non-sense in every possible way. How on earth does anyone come up with an original idea if they can only think in one set way? How is it that the political parties of today no longer stand for the things they stood for when they started out, or even from fifty year ago if people are only capable of thinking in one set way?

There is so many holes in what you're saying I just don't see how you can not see them....
 
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Smurf said:
Nonsense. Everyone thinks in one set way. It is the nature of the human mind. Merely refusing to fall under a label does not make a person any more capable of taking a balanced look at a problem and creating a solution. Unless you can make an argument that your view of the world is personal and unique, I see no reason why you are any different from a person who does identify with your so-called 'label'. (a peice of terminology used millions of times from the individuality movement which originally gave it it's negative connotation)
I would find it extremely difficult to look at a problem in a thorough and balanced manner if I was already predisposed to solving it in a predetermined (one set way) manner.
 
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I'de recommend all of you read James Madison's, "The Federalist, No. 10" and "The Federalist, No. 51" other wise known as the Federlist Papers. I think alot of the issues being conflicted upon in this thread are addressed on James Madison's Genius Papers.
 
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edward said:
I would find it extremely difficult to look at a problem in a thorough and balanced manner if I was already predisposed to solving it in a predetermined (one set way) manner.
I'm sure most people would
 
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Smurf said:
I'm sure most people would
A lot of people have become sheeple.
 
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Townsend said:
So a baby thinks in one set way and he/she cannot change that one set way?
I have never said anything of that sort.
So we are all born thinking the way we think and we cannot change?
I have never said anything of that sort
In case you didn't notice that is precisely what you're saying Smurf.... :rolleyes:
I never said anything of that sort. You will not find, anywhere in the last 3 pages, have I ever said that someone can not and does not change. In fact, if you look back you will find a specific example of my self in which I describe that I changed into an anarchist. I think if you look back over my post records you will find I'm far leaning onto the nurture side of the nature vs. nurture debate. Again, I have no said anything of that sort, you are making ice cream out of pizza.

There is so many holes in what you're saying I just don't see how you can not see them....
Frankly I don't see how you do see them.
 
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edward said:
A lot of people have become sheeple.
People always have been.
 
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zeronem said:
I'de recommend all of you read James Madison's, "The Federalist, No. 10" and "The Federalist, No. 51" other wise known as the Federlist Papers. I think alot of the issues being conflicted upon in this thread are addressed on James Madison's Genius Papers.
I have read those papers...he wrote those papers to support the ratification of the constitution. Madison was the architect of the constitution and he saw a need to protect individual liberty from faction. To that end he succeeded however what he missed, and later he even changed his position on, was the need for a balance between liberty and democracy.

It is what makes up the difference between republicans and democrats. You see contrary to their title liberals are in favor the voice of the people. Doing what is for the collective good. The name liberal is non-sense from FDR New Deal....conservatives are those who favor (at least at one time) the protection of personal liberty.....

The republican party started by Thomas Jefferson was actually the start of the democratic party. Weird how names swap around so much huh?

Any how....a democrat today is not what a democrat used to be and the same is true for republicans....

democrats today are a much more socialist than they were just 100 years ago and I believe that was Regan's main plate form....that we wanted to undo a lot of the socialist programs that came from the New Deal.....(help me out if I am getting any of this wrong...)

Anyhow...In my opinion those papers don't readily address these topics. Not that they're a bad read or anything....
 
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zeronem said:
I'de recommend all of you read James Madison's, "The Federalist, No. 10" and "The Federalist, No. 51" other wise known as the Federlist Papers. I think alot of the issues being conflicted upon in this thread are addressed on James Madison's Genius Papers.
Okay. I will. For anyone else who wants to you can find them here:
http://www.law.ou.edu/hist/federalist/
 

SOS2008

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zeronem said:
I'de recommend all of you read James Madison's, "The Federalist, No. 10" and "The Federalist, No. 51" other wise known as the Federlist Papers. I think alot of the issues being conflicted upon in this thread are addressed on James Madison's Genius Papers.
Unfortunately, like the Bible, such documents are always interpreted to fit each individual's agenda.
 
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SOS2008 said:
Unfortunately, like the Bible, such documents are always interpreted to fit each individual's agenda.
That's my point exactly. I think one of the main problems these days is that everyone is always arguing their own view in Politics. Maybe people should have more objective conversations on Politics rather then subjective conversing. It's about time everyone talk objectively about these situations. The more subjective we come about politics the more it becomes harder to define what exactly is liberalism and what is conservativism. A Professor I knew always mentioned that the terms liberal and conservative have been so overused that they have lost meaning.
 
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zeronem said:
That's my point exactly. I think one of the main problems these days is that everyone is always arguing their own view in Politics. Maybe people should have more objective conversations on Politics rather then subjective conversing. It's about time everyone talk objectively about these situations. The more subjective we come about politics the more it becomes harder to define what exactly is liberalism and what is conservativism. A Professor I knew always mentioned that the terms liberal and conservative have been so overused that they have lost meaning.
Overused? They lost there meaning when the terms were used to change the public perception of the ideals for which they stood. More often then not the terms that were related to those ideals had nothing to do with the actual ideals. Liberalism for example has NOTHING to do with the democratic party...NOTHING. It was what the conservative party called themselves and what they stood for (at one time, not so much any more). Since FDR wanted to have a right wing perception on his left wing ideas he started to call his ideals liberalism.....

Conservatives needed to make sure their ideals were not being confused with those of FDR and so they conceded the name and adopted conservative instead.
 

loseyourname

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SOS2008 said:
If you want a republic with a democratic way of life (i.e., by the people, for the people) that means citizen participation. If you don't want to be bothered, than feel free to move to a dictatorship, monarchy or some such country. The self absorbed characteristic of the spoiled and lazy--often younger generations is pathetic if you ask me.
Oh please, why do you have to make this a generational thing? How many generations before the current generation of youth were really that involved in politics? Have you even been to a college campus on either coast in the last fifteen years? You'll be bombarded with people asking you to get involved in some cause or other, to sign a petition, donate some money, or attend a meeting.

Personally, I don't advocate that kind of lifestyle, but I can understand where those people are coming from. Everyone needs meaningful work of some kind. I like scholarship, they like activism.

I also don't see why you need to insult the self-absorbed. Not all people are as social as others, and some just have cares that don't lie so much in the public sphere. Let them be; live and and let live. If some hermit raising sheep in southern New Zealand is happy and doesn't feel the need to change the world, more power to him. If we were all more like him, maybe the world wouldn't have so many problems to begin with.

And BTW, there is nothing wrong with helping others, but you should help your own first. Talk about unpatriotic. :rolleyes:
It's hard to agree with that. Emotionally, sure, we're always going to be inclined to help those we identify with more than those we don't. But if we step back and take an objective look at things, it seems to me that we should help those who most need our help, regardless of how similar they are to us, or how closely related. When people learn to look beyond some line on a map and view the entire globe as their community, the world will take a huge step forward.
 

vanesch

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Smurf said:
:rolleyes: Well, congradulations then? What are you going to call it? Unpredictabilitism? Changerism?

I don't know, you're the *ism specialist :smile:
 

vanesch

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Evo said:
Some people don't care to label themselves, or be part of a group that thinks in one set way. Some people prefer to take a balanced look at each individual problem and solve it in the best possible way. I don't see any value in being on any particular side and throwing rocks and stones at another group to make myself feel better about my own beliefs. I see way too much of it.
:approve: Ah, there are other reasonable people out there :approve:
 
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vanesch said:
I don't know, you're the *ism specialist :smile:
Sarcasm (not sure if you got it or not). Merely because you act like a socialist one day, does not make you a socialist. It does not mean you've jumped from one ideology to another in a few seconds, it just means you arrived at the same conclusions as a socialist would in response to the given problem. As I've said before identifying with an ideology is not agreeing on a set of solutions, but agreeing on a world view. Your world view doesn't change from day to day unless your have a really bad addiction to LSD.

So, if you acted like a socialist one day, and an anarchist another day it's not because you're a moderate and don't have a world view, it's just that you're world view overlapped with socialism one day and anarchism the next. You still have a world view - one that, in all likely hood, members of a certain ideological label will agree with. You now identify with that ideology. (or you're in one of the last 2 groups and refuse to identify).

Later, if your world view changes (usually happens when you do something outside of your usual routine in life) you will find you no longer agree with that certain ideology. You may agree with capitalism, anarchism, or minarchism (You'd get along better with LYN then).

What do you think?
 

vanesch

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As I said, by definition everybody who is going to make judgements on what things should happen has a way (an algorithm) to arrive at his judgements. You are claiming something trivial, that everybody has a way to arrive at judgements. Yes. Of course. If that's what an ideology is all about, the word looses its meaning, because EVERYTHING is an ideology. But what one usually understands about it is a kind of grand view of how much better the world would be if we just did *this*. THAT does not have to be accepted by everybody. You seem to deny the existence of that non-acceptance.

But I'll try to put all my cards on the table, and you will tell me what my ideology is. If stuff is missing, just ask me.

*) Human variability: First of all, I consider human beings as drawn out of a very large statistical sample, and there are peace-loving and violent ones, smart and stupid ones, honest and dishonest ones etc... There is part of this statistical variation which is probably environment-induced, and there is part of it that is inherent. So already I don't believe in any rule that says that behaviour of people will fundamentally change if we change the structure of society, or in any a priori equality of humans.

*) I'm moderately against violence. I think that if one can find a reasonable way to solve a problem without violence, that this should have priority. Only in last instance, one should ressort to violence. But I can take it that such problems occur, so in that case, one should use violence. I am also convinced that you cannot convince a certain part of the set of human beings to act like this, so the only thing you can do is to have superior violence available (from a state, say), to enforce this behaviour.

*) I think people act essentially in a hedonist way: seek pleasure, avoid pain. However, whatever is "pleasure" can be very very very varied. For some it is leading a luxury life, for others it is feeling good because they do good for others, still for others it is to have their name written in history etc...

*) I think it is important to organize things in such a way that most people are moderately happy.

*) I think that people should be free to act unless that gives problems with other humans. So, a priori, if something is not forbidden, it is allowed, and not the other way around.

*) I'm a believer in science, in a very broad sense (learning to know the world). I think it is the only useful thing that humans do, apart from keeping themselves moderately happy. I could go into the reasons for my belief, but it would take long.

*) I think humanity is not here to last, so whatever we do, it is of not that much importance. As such, I don't give any absolute value to "human rights" or "human life" or the like. It is just because we happen to be the dominant species on our planet right now that we think of ourselves to be superior or special. Nevertheless, taking on these rules of behaviour can lead to more happiness for most of us, so it is probably a good strategy to follow, but it has no intrinsic value apart from the strategy to bring happiness.

You tell me what ideology that is.

What are the consequences of the above ?
- clearly I advocate the existance of a state, because it limits violence between individuals.
- I didn't say anything about HOW that state should make decisions and rules, except for the fact that it should respect the a priori freedom of the individual. Whether it is a democracy, a dictatorship, a monarchy ... or whatever form doesn't A PRIORI matter. Its structure IS A PROBLEM ONE SHOULD SOLVE, and not something that one should impose a priori. The solution must come from the axiom that one should seek moderate happiness for most humans. If it is a monarchy that brings this, go for the King. If it is a republic, go for the president. If it is a highly decentralized structure, go for it. But don't forget that we also should advance science !
- I didn't say anything about HOW to organize economic activity. If just giving people property rights (and hence instore capitalism) will do, go for capitalism. If property is only owned by the state, and if that makes most people moderately happy, go for communism. And don't forget that we also should advance science.

Then HOW should we organize economy ? Well, we should consider different models, different ways of instoring rules, and have the statistical lot of different human beings act out on it (determine the predictable dynamics it will induce). After letting it evolve a bit according to its equations of motion, we should then find out whether this leads to happy people or not. The one that leads to most happiness for most people, and did produce the best advances in science, is the best method. I can already tell you that it is not going to be pure capitalism or pure communism.

So, tell me, I'm what of an *ist ?
 

SOS2008

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loseyourname said:
Oh please, why do you have to make this a generational thing? How many generations before the current generation of youth were really that involved in politics? Have you even been to a college campus on either coast in the last fifteen years? You'll be bombarded with people asking you to get involved in some cause or other, to sign a petition, donate some money, or attend a meeting.
True there is always more activism on college campuses, but just comparing Vietnam to now--it's people like Cindy Sheehan who is seen protesting Iraq. At least people got out and voted in larger percentages last election, though the reasons of a divided nation is a sad one.
loseyourname said:
I also don't see why you need to insult the self-absorbed.
What was I thinking? You're right, being self-absorbed is a good thing to be. :rolleyes:
loseyourname said:
It's hard to agree with that. Emotionally, sure, we're always going to be inclined to help those we identify with more than those we don't. But if we step back and take an objective look at things, it seems to me that we should help those who most need our help, regardless of how similar they are to us, or how closely related. When people learn to look beyond some line on a map and view the entire globe as their community, the world will take a huge step forward.
Please refer to posts in the taxation thread and posts in the thread on the economy and trade agreements. You can't help others if you don't take care of yourself first, and at this time we need to focus on getting our own house in order.

You realize you contradict yourself with these two points, don't you?
 

Astronuc

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Smurf said:
Everyone thinks in one set way.
Not necessarily. When it comes to taking a step, one must take one step. That does not mean that the next step is the same as the previous.

If one receives better or different information, one may choose a different subsequent step (or path).

The mind (or perhaps as well developed mind) adapts to a changing environment.

Politically, I would describe myself as a 'communitarian'. :biggrin:
 
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vanesch said:
As I said, by definition everybody who is going to make judgements on what things should happen has a way (an algorithm) to arrive at his judgements. You are claiming something trivial, that everybody has a way to arrive at judgements. Yes. Of course. If that's what an ideology is all about, the word looses its meaning, because EVERYTHING is an ideology.
Exactly. You agree then. Good.

But what one usually understands about it is a kind of grand view of how much better the world would be if we just did *this*. THAT does not have to be accepted by everybody. You seem to deny the existence of that non-acceptance.
No, I merely deny that that is actually a major factor in any ideology outside of religious fundamentalists. And object to your statements and implications that (paraphrased) "ideologies are naive because they only have a few set ideas about how to fix problems and can't look at the big picture objectively"

You tell me what ideology that is.
I havn't the feintest clue. There are millions of ideologies which could be associated with those statements.

What are the consequences of the above ?
- clearly I advocate the existance of a state, because it limits violence between individuals.
Which describes 80% of the major ideologies today.
- I didn't say anything about HOW that state should make decisions and rules, except for the fact that it should respect the a priori freedom of the individual. Whether it is a democracy, a dictatorship, a monarchy ... or whatever form doesn't A PRIORI matter. Its structure IS A PROBLEM ONE SHOULD SOLVE, and not something that one should impose a priori. The solution must come from the axiom that one should seek moderate happiness for most humans. If it is a monarchy that brings this, go for the King. If it is a republic, go for the president. If it is a highly decentralized structure, go for it. But don't forget that we also should advance science !
- I didn't say anything about HOW to organize economic activity. If just giving people property rights (and hence instore capitalism) will do, go for capitalism. If property is only owned by the state, and if that makes most people moderately happy, go for communism. And don't forget that we also should advance science.[/quote]From that; I would call you a "moderate group 1" (someone who hasn't decided yet). Because you basically just said "I don't know" "I don't care" as long as the people are moderately happy and you can think about science a fair bit. That's political apathy. (however I don't think you really are that apathetic, I think you've just failed to present your political ideas - intentionally or not)

I can already tell you that it is not going to be pure capitalism or pure communism.
That's an opinion. (!!) You advocate a mixed economy. Good, give me more like that and maybe I'll be able to assign you an ideology :rofl:

So, tell me, I'm what of an *ist ?
Not all end with *ism. Some are *cracys, some are *ics. Who knows, I might even assign you an *omic.
 

vanesch

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Smurf said:
Exactly. You agree then. Good.
I said from the start, that if you were going to use ANY decision algorithm as an ideology (and everybody who uses such an algorithm, an idealist), then the point you make is trivially true. But that this is not what is usually understood by "ideology" and "idealist".

No, I merely deny that that is actually a major factor in any ideology outside of religious fundamentalists. And object to your statements and implications that (paraphrased) "ideologies are naive because they only have a few set ideas about how to fix problems and can't look at the big picture objectively"
But *that* is what is usually understood by "idealist".

I havn't the feintest clue. There are millions of ideologies which could be associated with those statements.
Yes, but they add a lot of other stuff too.

That's an opinion. (!!) You advocate a mixed economy. Good, give me more like that and maybe I'll be able to assign you an ideology :rofl:
No, I don't *advocate* a mixed economy. I can only, in specific cases, like ideal communism and capitalism, deduce what the *real* predictable consequences will be with *real* human beings (and not idealized ones), and see that they lead to societies which are further away from what I consider "good" (namely: reasonable happiness for most of us, and the advancement of science) than what the world is today! You can only work out consequences of a sufficiently narrow set of theories. When the class of theories gets too broad, you don't have any predictability left. I think the class "mixed economy" is too broad to be discussed in fact ; while ideal capitalism and ideal communism are precise enough.
So I know at least two idealisms that WILL NOT WORK well. However, there's a fundamental difference between communism and capitalism *in practice*: communism has to be *instored* while capitalism (the practical one, not the ideal one) *instores itself*. Practical capitalism *is a consequence* of certain rules of the game ; it has to be admitted that it is a powerful self-organizing principle. So when I don't know of any better solution, I think we can just as well let things organize themselves. So yes, I'm favorable - by lack of better knowledge of a solution - to have at least a partial form of capitalism, until we think of something better. I think that for certain problems however, it DOES NOT WORK WELL, so there we have to do something. So I consider capitalism as the "default" solution when I don't have any better idea, and which instores itself ; happily it doesn't work so badly after all in many domains.
 

loseyourname

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SOS2008 said:
What was I thinking? You're right, being self-absorbed is a good thing to be.
If you're not hurting anyone and promoting utility in your own little way, what's wrong with not being concerned with those outside your immediate domain?

You realize you contradict yourself with these two points, don't you?
I'm not sure what you mean. What two points? Taking care of yourself is fine. My point is that an American living 500 miles from me that I've never met and don't work with is no more my "self" than some kid growing up in rural China.

By the way, where I was going to school in LA, there were thousands of students marching on the federal building in Century City every other week to protest the war, organizing discussion groups up in Pasadena and planning trips to DC. This was months before the war even began. Where was Sheehan then? Just because the media ignores these kids and covers Sheehan doesn't mean she's the only one out there.
 
loseyourname" said:
I'm not sure what you mean. What two points?
I believe that SOS was refering to the conflict between advocating for the self-centered and the idea of a global community.

I see how that reconciles though if I understand what you mean by self-absorbed.
 

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